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The Stream

News/Business. Wajahat Ali. (2013) Navajo environmental activist Earl Tulley talks about the deadly consequences of uranium mining on sacred land. (CC) (Stereo)

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00:31:00

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Comcast Cable

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Channel v107

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mpeg2video

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ac3

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704

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480

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America 6, United States 3, Navajo Nation 2, U.s. 2, Shula 1, Obamacare 1, Ali Velshi 1, Fukushima 1, Al Jazeera.com 1, Congress 1, Us 1, Jazeera America 1, The Old 1, Lebanon 1,
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  Al Jazeera America    The Stream    News/Business. Wajahat Ali.  (2013) Navajo environmental  
   activist Earl Tulley talks about the deadly consequences of...  

    August 24, 2013
    5:30 - 6:01am EDT  

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with an autographed jersey, and obama shared a few praise. >> coach shula retired with more wins than any coach in history. each time that record has been challenged, team after team has fallin short. >> michael eaves joins us to talk more about that. the president was having a lot
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this is the 900-page document we call obamacare. it could change costs, coverage, and pretty much all of healthcare in america. my show sorts this all out. in fact, my staff has read the entire thing. which is probably more than what most members of congress can claim. we'll separate politics from policy, and just prescribe the facts. mission. >> there's more to america, more stories, more voices, more points of view. now there's are news channel with more of what americans want to know. >> i'm ali velshi and this is "real money." this is "america tonight." sglovrjs our -- >> our news coverage reveal more of america's stories.
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they told me i got a little bit of health issue with i think they called it something to do with my pancreas. >> reporter: from cancer to birth defects uranium exposure took a devastating toll on the navajo nations and effects are being uncovered and this is something you and your family and friends lived with for decades. kind of describe the things you have seen happen and that are now seeming almost more than there. >> one of the first aspects of this is it's no respect of person and therefore the ailments and sicknesses that come forth will attach to young, the old, non-navajo and navajo and that is just to sum it all up, that we are all going to be
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impacted in one fashion or another. and impacted in a fashion, it may be -- in the future generations because look at breast milk and mothers are feeding their children basically what will happen is what is filtering down in that particular gene. these are pictures who lost six of their children in one family to navajo neuropathy and see the bellies bloated and faces around and she talks about watching a movie about fukushima and say they look at the kids on the reservation. >> that is true and that was taken in blue gap and the community i come from and navajo neuropathy impacted the family, one particular family because they were at the mouth of where the mining, was taking place and a lot of the leaching did come forth down into their little communities. and so now we have the technologies that we do have and basically what will happen is you can take a look at the
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pictures and you can begin to compare and some of those kids may not be necessarily alive today but can say i remember my child had that same symptom so when they take a look at this, they begin to ask their children, tell me what this is saying because, again, we have translation issues as well. >> before i move on our community wants to ask whose responsible and joseph crimes in the government owe the november hoe the medical and monetary support they give and at very least the u.s. owes a cleaner and safer environment and they must be ameliorated as much as possible. who do you hold responsible for this and what can be done? >> well, because most of the mining, that occurred during the 30s to the 60s was predominately for the weapons program or the united states. of course you would say it is the united states responsibility not only to pay for healthcare
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and cleanup but also to look at the issues that were at hand and now currently we are dealing with not just weapons but energy problem so it's up to the united states to find an energy solution so we don't use dirty type of energy because nuclear power is not green and not renewable and not recycling and people call it a nuclear field chain but it's not a cycle. everybody calls it a nuclear field cycle but we call it a chain because every step of the chain has waste and it's not the water and contaminated houses, we saw a picture of a sheep with no hair and the loss of our plants. it's the plant nations, the animal nations and not just human kind but all of these, this life that is lost is incalculable. if you say combination, how do you compensate for losing a strain of plant when that was a type of medicine to our people. you really cannot pay for that type of compensation.
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so we need to stop all new mining, continue to cleanup and look at solutions for the future so we don't allow this to happen again to our people. >> steven i get early on this was an excited new form of energy, people were not aware of the dangers but by the 50s this was beginning to be fairly well documented. who do you think knew how bad this could be and why wasn't anything done to protect the people and the land once this all surfaced? >> well, we are talking about the 1950s and through the 60s where more information was available within the government. and the sad fact is that the federal government did not disclose that information to navajo government officials at the time. and it wasn't until the late 70s and throughout the 80s that we started to understand this information regarding the health effects, both to workers that were in the mines and the uranium mills on the sites and lot of the responsibility goes back to the federal government and the industry.
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and a lot of the reasons for this is just because it was more ex speedent for the purposes of the government. and maybe in an attempt to minimize their ultimate responsibility. but my agency was formed in 1972 and 1973 to deal with these issues and we have been knocking on the government's door and industry. >> reporter: that is 40 years. >> in the back. >> reporter: that is 40 years that the organization has been, you know, together and working on this. >> exactly. >> reporter: what really has been accomplished here? >> well, i can tell you that a lot of the work that we have done to characterize and inventory has been done in conjunction with the federal government and it has been difficult to get resources to bring to bare on these issues. but people in my agency some of them have been working for the navajo nation and the navajo people for 30 years plus, they are veterans and they are tireless.
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you know, my hat goes off to them everyday because they have been working at this as long as anyone has and we keep rolling up our sleeves everyday because we know that major part of the -- major part of the solution is to bring the government back to bare on these issues with resources, technology and the cleanup remedies. >> before you move on talking about progress here is a board game from the 50s called the uranium are such board game an excite!ing game for the family with your own geiger counter and you fast forward and in 99 they game every one gama-goat and this exposes the dangers of uranium with his friend rad-ram. so we have come a long way and i want to go to you with this, earl, speaking about education and awareness, when gama-goat is not eating fictional hay and what can be done to bring
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education and awareness for the native people? >> full disclosure is something that is really important. we can begin to compare numbers. we can begin to take a look at these particular studies that have been performed and basically break it down to the human level. and that human in laymen's terms is basically something we really, really need to do. the other aspect of this is who becomes responsible, who bears the brunt of this? obviously it should be the corporations. we are taking a look at the idea of wealth versus health. the community people want health. and government --. >> reporter: i want to focus and look at my screen while you are talking and the pie chart if you can see it here, we will take it in a second, the gray area, those are all the mine companies owners not identified. so when you are talking about government and corporations taking responsibility look at that. they don't know what the people place. >> the other aspect of that is those are particular companies and have names but we should pin
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the actual owners and presidents and stakeholders so that those particular assets could be put on the table as well for the compensation of folks that have -- that bare the brunt of this. one of the areas here is that you know earth day basically was executed years ago and now there is a repeal in the context that said okay let's see what we can do to neutralize, neutralizing and putting brushing it under the rug is not addressing the issue. we need to take a look at the impact, the cold hard study that was done. what type of impact is happening now because it has a one thousand year life. >> reporter: how is the navajo nation moving forward which is what we want to talk about after the break and we will discuss this when we come back but look at a few more stories trending right now across america.
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hello, welcome to the news hour. these are the top stories. the u.s. is weighing its option for military option after a new video suggests a chemical weapons attack has taken place. >> in the northern city of triply, the syrian battle drowned has now moved to lebanon. >>